Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Guests and Their Property?

Homeowners should be expecting the unexpected and prepared for everything from house fires to slips and falls. One way to be prepared is to purchase a Homeowners policy. Personal lines insurance wholesalers should be able to map out exactly what their clients need to keep their property, their finances, their guests, and their guests’ belongings safe.

To better understand if guests are protected by an existing coverage plan, here are some scenarios.

Overnight Guests

Friends and family stopping by for a quick weekend trip can present as much of a problem as guests staying for weeks. If a pipe bursts or a small fire breaks out, their belongings could get damaged or destroyed in the process. The silver lining is that a homeowners insurance policy usually covers their items, especially ordinary items like clothing and electronics. Most policies provide medical expense coverage for guests as well.

Short-Term Living Situation

If someone needs to stick around for a couple months while they look for work or shop for a new place of their own, it can create a tricky situation for homeowners. These guests may have some items at a home while other items stay locked up in storage in the interim. While they are considered to be part of a household, even for a short period of time, items damaged in their storage won’t be covered. In this case, they should opt for their own renter’s insurance to cover the storage unit and expensive household items.

Renting Out Property

Renting out homes is becoming more and more common for homeowners and renters looking to stay somewhere short-term, say six months or less. Homeowners in this scenario may need to get more specialized insurance to protect their guests as most coverage plans specifically exclude coverage if homes are being used for income purposes.

One-Time Home-Sharing

Some homeowners take up the opportunity to open up their house for special events, like if the Super Bowl or Final Four is in town. In the Greater Palm Springs area, homeowners are no stranger to seeing $1,000 or more come in over one weekend for one room for the annual Coachella Music Festival. Sometimes, a major event can make opening up a home very lucrative. But what does it mean for homeowners who will be seeing multiple guests filter in and out?

Guests who pay will likely be considered normal guests and fall under the same coverage umbrella as non-paying guests (i.e. friends and family), as long as the homeowner doesn’t rent out units. Before renting out any of a property to strangers, say on sites like Vrbo or Airbnb, the homeowner should make sure their coverage limits are high enough to protect them against major lawsuits, medical emergencies, or vandalism of any kind.   They also need to make sure their Homeowners policy covers the exposure of short term rental. There is coverage available when this scenario exists, but the current policy may exclude it. Be sure to contact your agent to make sure you have the coverage you need.

About Mavon Insurance

At Mavon Insurance, we pride ourselves on our unique approach to insurance. We focus on integrity, communication, professionalism, respect, and gratitude to help our clients succeed and place business in specialized markets. For more information about our products or to become an agent, please contact us today at (855) 248-1480.